We are very lucky at Studio8 to be working in a job that we love and you can can do it too! This article has been put together for students and anyone else thinking about making their way into film and video production.
A job in Video Production offers a diverse, creative and rewarding career full of unique experiences. There are plenty of different areas that you can look into which will suit your skill set.
Perhaps you enjoy the idea of planning shoots, and therefore you may be suited to a career in Production (Producer), you could have a gift for composition and seek out a career as a Cinematographer, or you have an eye for spotting shots within a mix of footage and are able to cut these together, if this is the case, editing (Editor) could be your choice.
The first thing to ask yourself is “why would I like to get involved in video” and “what am I naturally able to bring to a shoot”. It’s important to find these things out first so you can develop a CV and reel that demonstrates this.
We receive many great CV’s, however, we do get some without any examples of previous experience or content illustrating the applicants interests and strengths. The great thing about Video is that anyone, if they really want to, can start now. Make sure you have taken the time to create some content so you can showcase this work when you approach a studio.
It’s easy and don’t feel you need a brand new camera to shoot with. We have seen amazing showreels that have been captured on the most inexpensive cameras. It’s the shots, ideas, edit and presentation that are really important – this all shows passion and ability – it’s the people who put this all together that will go on to find work doing what they love.
Ideas for your Submission
If you are thinking about contacting a production company for a position, here are a few simple things to do, in order to help your application to stand out :
If you have attended a course in Media, Video Production or similar that is great and you’ll likely have some understanding of this industry and some content you can show. If you haven’t get on Youtube and watch some how to videos, buy some books from Amazon or ask to do some work shadowing. There are so many ways to learn the basics and this will get you off to a good start. Don’t put anything off. If you have no showreel, go shoot something, anything, edit it and put it online, show off why you are different and what sets you apart – instagram is a great platform for this, here’s our feed . . .
Every production company is different. Some specialise in a certain subject matter or industry, and some may be a more general studio working within different sectors. Ensure you learn about the company you are interested in and think about why you would like to be part of that team.
You will know if this is the type of content you could get excited about, and therefore create amazing work. Express why you want to work with the chosen studio and what inspired you to contact them. Adding this to your application is likely to make you feel more confident in approaching the company and will increase your chances of your application standing out amongst the others.
Be Creative with your Application
This is your chance to make a first impression – don’t waste it! When you are approaching a creative company, be creative! It’s very easy to put together a standard looking CV on a word doc with a few links, and laid out well this could catch someone’s eye, however we live in a digital world. So why not make the most of online tools to bring your application to life.
You could send a link to an online CV that has videos embedded within it. (You can still have a download button with your printable version there if you want to.)
A great website / web CV will be both interactive and engaging and will demonstrate your ability to think creatively. There are plenty of free website building tools such as WordPress and Wix.com that could help you do this with ease.
This is probably THE MOST important thing to get right. I’m 99% certain that most production studios, when searching for new talent, will want to click on your reel first. If they like that, they’ll read on. It’s also the proof that everything you say you can do, can be done with amazing quality.
This has to be fresh and up to date. If content is looking old, drop it and go shoot something new. If plugins and fonts seem dated, download some more and change things up. Don’t get lazy and don’t get complacent, for every person that does, there’s 10 others that are out there putting 10000% in, and they are the ones who will light up the CV inbox.
In our showreel we have tried to include a broad range of work. This allows us to showcase some our favourite shots from a mix of subjects.
Never Stop Creating
Production agencies have an ongoing schedule of different shoots happening throughout the year. Some are planned way in advance and some come when you least expect them (we sometimes get same day requests).
Studios will have a team in place to cover these. They might have an in-house team, plus a pool of freelancers. If you have been successful, you could be either on the payroll or on the freelancer contact list . If you’re not yet, don’t give up. Go find another studio or other work for now, but don’t stop shooting.
If you keep creating and keep your profile live, good Directors and Production studios will notice. They may be checking back to view your work from time to time and there may be that one opportunity that arises where they give you a call to ask for you to help out on a shoot or have a job opening within the company.
Also, don’t feel you can’t check back yourself with companies to see if things have changed. We have found some of our best freelancers like this.
There is nothing in your way. Go out there, create some killer content, get it online, get it noticed and never give up. If you truly love video and keep shooting, you have everything chance of making yourself a career in Video Production!